I didn’t pay much attention to the reviews for this movie when it came out, but I’m under the impression that they weren’t very good. Not surprisingly, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Johnny Depp, in a very restrained performance for him, plays an American tourist, a college math teacher from Wisconsin, who meets a beautiful, mysterious, and probably dangerous woman (Angelina Jolie) on the train from Paris to Venice. Before you know it, he’s involved in all kinds of trouble, because various groups are trying to capture and/or kill the woman, and they’ve mistaken him for a former associate of her who has stolen more than two billion dollars from a brutal, ruthless gangster.
This movie strikes me as a deliberate throwback to the sort of glossy, glamorous, lightweight suspense movies that were popular in the Sixties, like CHARADE, with a little Hitchcock influence thrown in since Depp’s character is the innocent man caught up in dangerous circumstances through no fault of his own. It reminded me somewhat of a Helen MacInnes novel, too, for the three or four of you who actually remember Helen MacInnes. (Got to do a Forgotten Books post on one of her novels one of these days.)
Anyway, I like that sort of movie, so I liked THE TOURIST a lot. Depp is very effective in his role, and Jolie looks magnificent walking around the picturesque Venice scenery in fancy evening gowns. That’s about all she has to do in this movie, but she does it well. There are rooftop chases, boat chases through the canals, a suitably dastardly villain, and a plot twist or two (predictable but still fun). The whole thing is so airy it threatens to float away at times, but sometimes that’s exactly what you’re in the mood for. If you are, I highly recommend THE TOURIST.
Movie Review: TALL, DARK AND HANDSOME (1941).
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